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Legal profession

What’s the news?

Every judge can now have his/her “followers” and indeed, may use Twitter to sample opinion with a view to staying onside any any particularly thorny legal question.


A New Year Resolution

The justification for this notion (that the State should be favoured) is the supposed need for certainty in public administration. This is a peculiar idea in this context; Prohibition, Mandamus, Quo Warranto or Certiorari do not present opportunity for an appeal. They challenge the legal base of the administrative action, not the correctness of the decision. A judge is not asked in these applications to substitute his/her view for that of the Executive. The judge is asked to check a legal error.



His firm on Park Avenue, New York, has filed for bankruptcy and the staff are fleeing the offices without their wages.


Trespassers will be prosecuted, including Tour Groups!

However, the history of Ireland is replete with times and periods when very real domestic threats of terrorism existed. Frequently, the Four Courts was the scene of forensic points of conflict between the State and an irregular armed power.


The Doctors’ Bill

The extent of injury inflicted on hospital patients by clinical negligence is a case in point. We do not know what it is. When it happens the consequences are real. Somebody somewhere pays for the injury. Clearly, the victim suffers the injury and pays in that fashion. The family of the victim may pay in care deployed or care costs paid. Or, if the family consists of children of the victim, the children may suffer diminished life opportunities by being deprived of care they would have got from the victim.


Business is Business

Under the Regulations, the plaintiff client will become liable for fees only if he/she:

a) fails to co-operate with the legal representative;

b) fails to attend any medical or expert examination or court hearing which the legal representative reasonably requests him to attend;

c) fails to give necessary instructions to the legal representative; or

d) withdraws instructions from the legal representative.


The New Legal Year 2

It cannot be true, however, that they have little or no confidence in their own lawyer; they hired him or her and would not have done so if they positively had no confidence in him or her. In any event it is probably misleading to use the term “confidence” in this context, something many clients would probably recognize intuitively. The emotion felt is probably closer to hope than anything else, or, in the case of very inexperienced clients, expectation. “Confidence” is something based on past experience; most clients have little experience of the legal system. What of a client accused of the offence of dangerous driving? How can his/her emotional state be said to be one of “confidence”, when the most positive outcome may, to the knowledge of the client, be one where public humiliation is attenuated by the lawyer speaking for the client, rather than snatching an acquittal from the situation?


The New Legal Year 1

Individual wrongdoing by a solicitor or a barrister implies little about any other lawyer. This is clearly the case where the wrongdoing consists of murder or armed robbery or dangerous driving. Even if it consists of mortgage fraud, it implies nothing about other lawyers. (Mortgage fraud may imply something about human nature, but lawyers, as such, are not accountable on that score). Mortgage fraud may indicate the desirability of having mortgage processing systems that will practically eliminate mortgage fraud.


The Long Vacation

Following a long-standing tradition, the Supreme Court, the High Court and the Circuit courts are on holiday.


Continuous Professional Development

In the real world, the best form of CPD is to do. Do the work and you know more than any lecture can ever convey.